Moving on the fast track in the run-up to the 2014 general elections, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday gave the green signal to the ambitious Amritsar-Delhi-Kolkata industrial corridor project, on the lines of the Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC), in an effort to promote development of the northern region and create more jobs.
The PM appointed an Inter Ministerial Group (IMG), under the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) Secretary, to prepare a feasibility report within a month for setting up the corridor to promote industrialisation in the northern region, said a statement from the PM's office.
The new industrial corridor, stretching over 1,900 km, will cover Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal.
This is the first such corridor after the DMIC, which is being developed with Japanese assistance at an estimated cost of $90 billion.
"The IMG will examine the feasibility of setting up the Amritsar-Delhi-Kolkata industrial corridor along with the structural and financing arrangements that would be required to operationalise it at the earliest. The IMG will give its report within a month," said the statement.
The IMG members will include secretaries of economic affairs, road transport, shipping and the chairman, Railway Board.
"This is one of the most densely populated regions in the world and houses about 40% of India's population. This is a region which needs a major push for industrialisation and job creation. This corridor will act as a catalyst for growth," the statement said.
The industrial corridor will use the Eastern Dedicated Freight Corridor as the backbone.
The UPA-2 is in the last year of its five-year tenure. The general elections are due in May 2014.